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The Kallanish Glossary aims to be a useful resource for complex industry specific terminology. We are constantly adding to our glossary, so if you have a suggestion or amendment please do get in touch.

Natural mineral containing less than 30% iron. It is the primary ore used in blast furnaces.

Tandem Mill

A type of cold-rolling mill, the tandem mill imparts greater strength, a uniform and smoother surface, and reduced thickness to the steel sheet. Unlike the original single-stand mills, a tandem mill rolls steel through a series of rolls (generally three to five in a row) to achieve a desired thickness and surface quality.


The pouring of molten metal from a ladle into an ingot mould. The economic advantages of continuous casting over ingot casting mean that the ingot-route process has largely been superseded for high volume production of steel


Heating to 200-500°C with the aim of making hardened steel tougher and less susceptible to cracking.

Temper Rolling

A second cold rolling for coil in which the reduction in gauge is minimal. Can be used to achieve a bright finish.


Sheet steel coated with a mixture of lead and tin. Terne principally is used in the manufacture of gasoline tanks, although it also can be found in chemical containers, oil filters, and television chassis.

Thin Slab Casting

This is where molten steel is continuously cast into slabs. These are either allowed to cool before reheating for hot rolling, or kept hot in a nearby furnace before being sent on to the hot mill. 

Tin Free Steel

Tin-free steel is a chromium-coated, corrosion-resistant steel which, like tinplate, is used for food and other packaging applications. The coating is applied to a cold-rolled, low-carbon steel coil in a continuous electrolytic process using chromic acid. The result is a very thin layer of chromium and chromium oxide. 

Tin Plate

This is thin sheet steel with a very thin coating of metallic tin. Tin plate is used primarily in canmaking. It has good corrosion resistance and food compatibility – although many products require a thin coating of lacquer to maximise the shelf life of the contents. 


The ton is a unit of weight, but takes various forms. A metric ton (usually written tonne) is 1,000 kilograms (kg) and is the most widely used. A long ton is 2,240 pounds (lb).

Tool Steel

Carbon and alloy steels that have high resistance to abrasion. As the name suggests this product group is especially well suited to the manufacture of tools (including stamping dies, shear blades, and hand tools such as spanners, machine tool bit holders etc).

Torpedo Car

Cylindrical railcar lined with bricks and used for transporting the hot metal from the blast furnace to the steel shop (steelworks).


Toughness is a measure of a material’s ability to resist fracture by absorbing the stress and strain imposed by sudden loading/impact. It tends to improve with increasing temperature. Tough material may undergo some deformation in absorbing sudden impacts, and a very tough material will have high strength (ability to resist deformation) and high ductility (ability to change shape without failure). Toughness is the opposite of brittleness.


Intermediate vessel used during casting to allow for changing over from one ladle to another without interruption in the process.

Tunnel Furnace

These are long, horizontal, refractory-lined, heated rectangular enclosures which are used to maintain steel semis leaving the caster at rolling temperature as they are transferred to the rolling mill. Their function is to save energy and raise productivity by avoiding the usual cooling and subsequent reheating of semis prior to hot rolling. The furnace also acts as a buffer between caster and mill to assist rolling mill scheduling. As semis move slowly through the tunnel, conveyed by a series of rolls, their temperature is maintained by burners mounted at intervals along the sidewalls.

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